Thursday, January 31, 2008

Pay Per Post

blog reviews

I applied with Pay Per Post just one day ago, and today they approved my blog. I'm excited to see the opportunities out there. I don't have a video camera, and I see oppertunities for videos in blogs, but we'll see what text ones come through.

Being laid off my job last week and still searching and testing (Medical transcription requires extensive testing before even getting an interview) for companies, I'm happy to do something to fill the gap in the meantime.

As a work-at-home mom, sometimes it takes some creativity to makethe money you need while still being able to keep a watchful eye on your child. I had a phone interview earlier today wiht a transcription company, and it involved a playpen, mason jar of chocolate chips, and me in the bathroom wiht the door closed ;) Don't know what my mama did without a portable phone!

As I type this, my daughter is sitting on the couch waving the phone at me and taunting that she might touch the 'no touching' lamp. I can look over and smile at her as I type, chant one of our favorite nursery rhymes (hickory dickery dock today), and keep on typing... A skill WAHMs have mastered, I'm sure :)


Parenting by grace

I've hugely changed my mind on what the 'right' way to parent is since my daughter was born. And I fully anticipate changing my mind 57 more times as different children and their different stages come along.

I thought she'd be on a schedule, be spanked for disobedience, and sleep in her own bed ;) She sleeps with me, is not on a schedule, and I do swat for disobedience, but that's rare.

I guess, it's a matter of the heart. I'm not set on spanking her, if there was something that worked better I'd do that. I don't believe spanking is for all children or all parents. It's just that for her it works. If I was having to swat her multiple times a day, I think I'd find something else to do.

I've also come away from the idea of 'punishment'. I don't punish her because she 'deserves' it. I'm not called to judge what she deserves, but more to encourage her to do what is right. And if what is 'right' is not swinging the lamp around or touching the electrical outlet, then a little flick might encourage that. Just consistently pulling her away from something sometimes might do the trick as well. I'm now a big believer in doing the least amount of negative response as possible, so if a consistent distraction works and accomplishes the desired outcome without negatively impacting the family, I'm happy to do that.

I've also seen families where the children dictate everything the family does, and I know I didn't want that. This is what initially turned me off from 'grace based parenting' that I'd heard about, but I believe that's just some people taking a concept and following it to a ridiculous extreme.

Both hubby and I come from families where the parents really had an agenda to 'show us who's boss'- his parents by physical discipline, mine by emotional manipulation. I don't really feel a burden to have her believe that I am boss. I'm guessing she does, but proving the point isn't something I'm interested in. Believing that God gave her to me for a time, rather than believing her to be 'my property' has been the best thing He has taught me regarding parenting, I think.

When I ask her to do something, I tend to really check myself to make sure she is capable of doing it relatively easily and that it's really necessary. I'm sure she *could* sleep through the night without nursing, but it's not necessary for me right now. If I really wanted to push, I *could* blanket train her (to stay on a blanket quietly on the floor for a set amount of time) but again, it's not really necessary. We were at a friend's with a Christmas tree a while back, and I knew it was perfectly within her ability to not touch it even though she would really like to, so I did require that of her. It's not so easy for her to get in her jammies at night without complaining if she's over-tired, so I don't require her to be quiet while I do that, but I do demand that she not physically fight me about it as I'm dressing her.

This whole experience has been really interesting to me, and humbling. I have to admit that I *do not* have control of her, I'm not ruling her by fear but rather encouragement. I don't believe disobedience is always sin on her part (this was what I believed before), and it may be not necessarily sin, but at least wrongness on *my* part for asking something of her that she is not really able to do or was for my selfishness rather than what she needed.

An example of something that illustrates my change is if a toddler is going over to the dog food bowl in a friend's house. He wants to see what it's all about. Curiosity is how children learn, it isn't a bad thing at all. But mommy doesn't want him to make a mess and tells him not to touch the dog food bowl. He is still inching closer to it, and she tells him again not to touch it. He continues to go closer to it.

Before, I thought that he 'deserved' a spanking for touching it, and if he spilled it, he would have to pick up all the pieces and put them back, and if he didn't, he would get a spanking for not following directions and it would repeat until he had picked up all the dog food.

Now, I most likely would try to distract the toddler with something else, but not completely remove the dogfood bowl from the situation as I do still desire to teach my child self control. If he didn't want to play with the other distractions I provided, and he still went back to the dogfood bowl, I might give a little flick on the hand as he went to touch it. This isn't about punishment, it's about a little negative stimuli to encourage him not to touch it. If he presisted, and the dog food got spilled, I would tell him we had to clean it up, and taking his hands, 'together' we would pickup the dog food. This isn't as overwhelming to a small child as being instructed to pick up the food on his own, by an angry parent. This is gently but firmly encouraging him to fix his mistake, and helping him do so.

If the dog food was absolutely still tempting after all this, then the child just most likely isn't capable of resisting the temptation and I *would* put it up. I'd prefer to use things like this, if possible, as a self discipline training tool rather than making everything 'babyproof' but I don't desire to exasperate my child either.


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Taking your own child's protraits

I wrote this on Associated Content and wanted to share. I'm thrilled with the way our pictures have turned out, they really are meaningful to us.


My favorites on Etsy

Favorites right now
Hmm, java isn't working?
How bout a list, then
Just ordered a couple diaper covers from Georganne, and a tie dye heart tee for Babe from SoBen :)


Learning to draw

Still learning to draw with Mona Brooks, the biggest thing I've taken so far from this was 'draw what you see, not what you think you see'

Using a specific point to start with, notice how every line and dot relates to the starting point. This is ball point pen because I was sitting at my desk as my sweet hubby and I had a 'discussion' and I needed to expend some energy, I suppose ;)

Certainly not a masterpiece, but a big improvement over anything I've drawn before.


Thursday, January 17, 2008


5 minutes for mom has another great contest. A way cool pedal car! Here's the post with all the info. And where they're sold online is here

When I worked in an Ace Hardware in Sebastopol the owner was big time into toys, and we had a couple of the pedal planes suspended from the ceiling. They looked cool, and actually were for sale, though in the 2 years I worked there I never saw any sold.

My daughter has been awake since 5 this morning... We were sleeping til 8 for a while, and that was nice... bummer.



Brown in the bottom of a big pot
2 lbs ground beef and
1 lb sausage (we use beef sausage)

1 onion, chopped (I have to use the quisenart so my hubby can't distinguish that there are actually onion pieces in there)

3-4 cups (or 2 cans) kidney beans, reserve the liquid
2 cans diced or sliced or crushed or whatever tomatoes, seasoned or not

3 tablespoons chili powder don't forget
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon celery seed
Salt to taste if you didn't use canned beans

Mix in a sauce pan
1/3 cup corn meal with
remaining bean juice
and simmer 10 minutes, then add to your pot. Cook on medium low for a few hours :)

Top with grated cheese if you have it when serving. We made half a recipe of corn bread, crumbled that at the bottom of the bowl, and then spooned the chili on top.



Sunday, January 13, 2008

Block crayons

Fun stuff, mama! coloring with her new block crayons from Three Sisters Toys. These are made with beeswax and are much nicer quality than Crayola. They last forever, and aren't as likely to be crushed as regular crayons. We like the true colors and that they're easy to grasp. I'm applying with the company that makes them right now to see about carrying them retail, that's how much I like them.

Art is one of those areas that I don't mind having a little less, if it's nicer quality.


Thursday, January 3, 2008

Contests! Prizes! New Habits!

A series of giveaways from 5 minutes for Moms, what fun!


Wednesday, January 2, 2008


We went to a wedding this weekend and had an absolute blast. The couple was a couple that had grown up together, which is always fun to see. The bride was the sister of my best friend, and I'd only met her once. My poor husband was wondering what on EARTH we were driving halfway across Montana to go to a wedding of a person I'd only met once and he'd never met, but it turned out to be a great growing experience.

The couple sent us their wedding invitation months ago with their picture on it, requesting our presence. I tend to wonder if they mostly wanted to see my sweet baby, but hey, at least we got invited too. We hemmed and hawed about RSVPing, because if it gets too cold we can't leave home or the pipes freeze. I can't wait until we build a home with insulation and a thermostat! Right now we have wood heat only, but occasionally use an electric heater in the back of the house when it gets below 0 degrees F.

We RSVP'd and said most likely yes. It brought back memories of planning my own wedding, back 4 years ago. We were a little different than modern America; I was married straight from my parent's home at age 20, never having lived on my own. My mom and I designed our wedding invitations online and had them printed, which certainly is a modern thing. We also ordered custom wedding announcements online. My mom mostly did the planning for my wedding, and it went well. It was exactly what she had in mind ~smirk~ and was the wedding of her dreams. It left something to be desired for myself and my hubby, but overall it got the job done.


Goals 2008

How many other blog posts do you think there are about goals in 2008 today? I don't make resolutions, I don't know what the future holds. But I have goals that I would like to meet this year. My parenting goals are fairly non-negotiable, so I'll just outline business goals here. And some business dreams. I'm a dreamer, which makes for an interesting business but needs to be kept in check in order to actually make a profit.

Goals and timeline:


1/10 By January 10th get wholesale order done- profit $90

1/13 With wholesale profit, $45 to checking, $45 to be spent a Thai silks on playsilks - 10 of 22x22; 5 of 30x30; 20 of 11x11

1/20 Ten valentine's day dolls listed

1/26 Silks dyed and listed

1/31 Five valentine's day dolls listed


2/1 to 2/7 Days off, catch up on housework, knitting, etc

12/15 Order green fabric for St Patrick's Day dolls- 1.5 yards grass green, .5 yards hunter

2/29 Five St Patrick's day dolls listed


3/1-3/7 Days off

3/7 Easter baskets listed, 5 (Easter is March 23rd)

3/17 Order soap supplies (to be determined)

3/21 Start soap batching

4/1-4/7 Days off

4/15 May day baskets of knitted felted flowers and basket to hang on door knob

4/23 Soap batch


5/1 - 5/7 Days off

More dolls/diapers, whatever I have time for

After this to be determined depending on sales, etc.


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